And that’s pretty much the story. Microsoft’s announced that Windows 8 has moved into “released to manufacturing” or RTM status. What this means for the little people is that testing is finished and Windows 8 is now a complete, wholesome project.
The finished code has also been shipped, or will begin to ship, to Microsoft’s OEM partners. Tablet and PC makers external from Microsoft can now begin to load the finished code onto its devices. Highly exciting times.
You, the Windows 8 user can get your sweaty mitts on a finished product come 26 October. There are a few options for snagging Windows 8. Either purchase it as an outright upgrade for US$40 (applies to new devices only), or spend US$15 to upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 8 Pro. Here’s the full release timeline.
- August 15th: Developers will be able to download the final version of Windows 8 via your MSDN subscriptions.
- August 15th: IT professionals testing Windows 8 in organisations will be able to access the final version of Windows 8 through your TechNet subscriptions.
- August 16th: Customers with existing Microsoft Software Assurance for Windows will be able to download Windows 8 Enterprise edition through the Volume License Service Center (VLSC), allowing you to test, pilot and begin adopting Windows 8 Enterprise within your organization.
- August 16th: Microsoft Partner Network members will have access to Windows 8.
- August 20th: Microsoft Action Pack Providers (MAPS) receive access to Windows 8.
- September 1st: Volume License customers without Software Assurance will be able to purchase Windows 8 through Microsoft Volume License Resellers.
Can’t wait? Grab the Windows 8 Release Preview and bask in the glory of the Metro interface.
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